Arab military chiefs to finish draft on joint Arab force before 29 June

Ahram Online , Saturday 23 May 2015

Military chiefs will intensify efforts to reach a framework agreement on a joint Arab military force ahead of the 29 June deadline, Egypt's Mahmoud Hegazy reveals

Members of the Southern Resistance Committees man a tank during clashes with Houthi fighters in Yemen's southern city of Aden April 23, 2015 (Photo: Reuters)

Arab military chiefs, currently meeting in Cairo, will intensify their efforts to agree on a draft outline of a planned joint Arab military force before 29 June, Egypt’s army chief Mahmoud Hegazy said Saturday.

In March, the Arab Summit delegated Arab military chiefs to prepare a draft outline of the tasks of the joint force by 29 June.

However, Hegazy said military chiefs should finish the draft before 29 June, to give the Arab Summit at least a month to discuss it, MENA reported.

The draft outline will include details on the composition and mode of intervention of the Arab joint military force.

Military chiefs of staffs of Libya, Qatar, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine landed at Cairo International Airport Friday to take part in the meeting.

This is the second meeting between top Arab defence officials. The first meeting took place in April, also in Cairo.

Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi proposed the idea of a joint Arab force at the Arab Summit in March, stressing that Arab countries are facing unprecedented "threats to their stability and identity."

Arab leaders agreed on the idea and decided on a four-month timeframe for military chiefs of staffs to decide on a framework for the force.

At the time of the Arab Summit, Arab League chief Nabil Al-Arabi said joining the joint force would be permanent, adding that joining the force would be “voluntary.”

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